HIGH profile fresh produce industry businessman Michael Simonetta has been appointed chair of the Australian Fresh Produce Alliance.
Members of the AFPA elected the Perfection Fresh chief executive officer to the role in January.
Mr Simonetta has been CEO of Perfection Fresh, one of Australia's largest growers and marketers of fruit and vegetables, for 30 years.
He takes over from innagural AFPA chair, Harry Debney of Costa Group.
Mr Simonetta said during the past year, Mr Debney was instrumental in leading the formation and creating a foundation of the AFPA.
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"Harry has set up the AFPA for ongoing success and on behalf of the AFPA board, I would like to thank Harry for all his efforts over the past year," Mr Simonetta said.
The AFPA is made up of the largest growers in the fresh produce industry, representing half of the industry turnover annually. AFPA membership is at the CEO level of each of these businesses and advocacy from the AFPA covers a range of cross horticulture issues.
"We have only been in operation for one year and have achieved a number of outcomes including holding regular retail roundtables with major retailers to discuss packaging and food waste; creating a reference group made up of our HR general managers to further industry employment issues; and producing a White Paper outlining a strategy to grow the value of the fresh produce industry to $20 billion by 2030," Mr Simonetta said.
"Over the next year, we hope to continue to deliver outcomes and direction for the fresh produce industry."